Scotland Makes World's First Urban Green Space Map

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Holyrood Palace, the royal residence in Scotland, is surrounded by green space. Photo: Bernt Rostad / Creative Commons.

Finding a place to hike or picnic in Scotland's cities just got easier with the introduction of what is thought to be the world's first comprehensive, interactive online map of urban green space -- 429 square miles in all.The interactive map, prepared by the charitable organization Greenspace Scotland with government support, allows anyone with access to a computer to search for green space using place names or postcodes, or just by scrolling around, the BBC reported today, noting the environmental as well as recreational benefits:

The tool may also help councils develop planning and environmental policy. Those who produced the map said it would provide a baseline for future updates, allowing them to track changes in the amount and type of green space in Scotland's towns and cities.

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Screenshot: Greenspace Map.

At the zoomed-in level, color-coded sections of the Greenspace Map divide the green space into public parks, private gardens, children's play areas, sports areas, green corridors, and other categories.

It's not the first forward-thinking investment Scotland has made in its green spaces. Earlier this year, a lottery fund of 9 million pounds was set up to create or improve parks, gardens and other community spaces across the country. Another project, this one driven by local cyclists, created an interactive map of Edinburgh's bike paths, including disused rail lines and park paths.

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